Liturgy and Ecology

  1. Lemma
  2. Liturgija i ekologija
  3. Serbian
  4. Ecclesiological Ecology (en)
  5. Stevanovic, Aleksandra
  6. Ecology and the environment
  7. 10-8-2016
  8. Purić, Jovan [Author]. Liturgy and Modern World, Orthodoxy before Challenges of Modern Times. 157–223, Liturgy, World, Eschaton – Ecclesiology and Ecclesiological Ecology
  9. Liturgy and Modern World [Orthodoxy before Challenges of Modern Times]
    1. Purić, Jovan
  10. eco-theology - religion and ecology
    1. "Liturgy and Modern World, Orthodoxy before Challenges of Modern Times" is a book written by a prominent scholar, Bishop Jovan Puric, who addresses the challenges of modern times. Divided into four main parts, it emphasizes the importance of religious recognition of the challenges. Third part of the book, "Liturgy, World, Eschaton – Ecclesiology and Ecclesiological Ecology", is found of particular importance because it brings the relation of ecology and religion into question.

      The third part of the book by Bishop Jovan Puric considers ecological problem as one of the crucial problems in the modern world and argues that it is in fact the problem and question of human relation to the world. In religious sense, it represents the spiritual crisis of human relation to God. Christianity in that sense finds the ecological problem very important and addresses it in number of papers. Theological-ecological societies are established, as well as similar institutions such as Institute for Theology and Ecology at Orthodox Academy of Crete (established in 1991). In that sense, Church considers Christian ecological education course necessary. In addition, Church should foster researches related to alternative eco-friendly energy resources and organize panel discussions regarding the theological-ecological issue and bioethical questions.

      Main idea of this part of the book, "Liturgy and Modern World, Orthodoxy before Challenges of Modern Times", is to bring arguments in favor of the statement that ecological problem is an anthropological one and corresponds to the crisis of man’s attitude toward the world and themselves. Thus, the crisis, as well as the responsibility for it, is also a religious one. Bishop Puric states that Orthodox theology believes that the approach to the ecological crisis should be completely altered. So far, the crisis has been considered in apocalyptic manner. In that sense, it is seen from a very selfish perspective where man fears becoming extinct and deals with ecological consequences merely for that reason. In order to tackle the problem successfully, man should develop eco-theological attitude towards the whole world, that is, liturgical attitude toward the community. Such altered mindset can bring long-term ecological benefits, rather than short-term ecological projects. Hence, Orthodox Church can educate people how to develop a positive ecological motivation, which may be done through eco-theological education. Acting separately, no sphere can address or solve the ecological crisis, what is needed is a sense of oneness, and in Orthodoxy that is achieved only through liturgy which connects man to themselves, other people and God. By acquiring liturgical-anthropological and liturgical-ecological ethos, the attitude of man may change and the problem of ecology may be solved successfully.

      General conclusion is that Church is aware of the fact that science deals merely with the consequences of ecological crises, which corresponds to treatment of the disease consequences instead of healing. Socio-technological perspective on this problem is regarded as one-sided and consequently unproductive as deep spiritual or anthropological sources of the problem should be tackled instead. The author of the book refers to the papers of Metropolitan John of Pergamon, whom he sees as one of the most significant Orthodox theologians addressing the problem of ecology. In conclusion, the solution to the problem might be the spiritual regeneration of man. In other words, the problem of ecology is not a scientific one, but rather a spiritual one.

      This part of the book is found important because it sees ecological problem not as purely scientific issue that has to be scientifically examined, but a theological problem as well. In that sense, Church should foster discussion and scientific research, as well as eco-theological education, while science should open itself for theological views of the issue. Hence, the answers may be found only in the intercrossing of these two, so far, disunited and differentiated spheres.